To report the oral corticosteroid-sparing effect of omalizumab in children with severe asthma.
16-week therapeutic trial.
Tertiary paediatric asthma clinic.
34 children with severe asthma maintained on oral prednisolone (median age 12 years; 15 children <12 years and 19 children ≥12 years).
Fortnightly or monthly subcutaneous injections of omalizumab; the dose was calculated as per manufacturer's instructions based on body weight and serum immunoglobulin E concentration.
Reduction in prednisolone dose; mini-Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire (AQLQ); Childhood Asthma Control Test (ACT); forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV(1)).
Median daily prednisolone dose reduced from 20 mg to 5 mg (n=34, p<0.0001), including seven children who stopped prednisolone completely. Mini-AQLQ score increased from 3.5 to 5.9 (n=24, p<0.0001). Childhood ACT score increased from 12 to 20 (n=23, p=0.0001). FEV(1) increased from 2.10 to 2.25 litres (n=31, non-significant). The reduction in prednisolone dose and improvements in mini-AQLQ and childhood ACT were significant in children both under and over 12 years of age, with no differences in outcome detected between these two groups.
A 16-week therapeutic trial of omalizumab allowed a significant reduction in daily prednisolone dose and was associated with improvements in asthma control and quality of life in 34 children with severe asthma. Similar benefits were seen in children both above and below 12 years of age. These uncontrolled data are very encouraging. There is an urgent requirement for a multicentre randomised placebo-controlled trial of omalizumab in children with severe asthma, with reduction in oral corticosteroid dose as the primary outcome measure.
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"Part of the reason for this relatively poor response on lung function could be the result of prior maximum bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory effects of corticosteroids and long-acting β2-agonists (LABAs) which all patients being selected for treatment with omalizumab will be receiving. However, what is most gratifying is the ability in both adults and children for oral and high dose inhaled corticosteroids to be reduced and, in some cases, stopped altogether with a reduction in corticosteroid comorbidities without loss of asthma control [18,19]. Also of importance is the marked effect of omalizumab in reducing emergency physician consultations, courses of oral corticosteroids and hospital admissions associated with severe exacerbations. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: IgE has long been known as a therapeutic target for allergic disease, but the difficulty has been in selecting agents that don't trigger cross linkage of IgE when bound to its high affinity receptor (FceR1) on mast cells and basophils. By "designing" a monoclonal antibody (mAb) which targets that part of IgE that binds to that binds to the a-chain of FceR1, the allergic cascade can be effectively interrupted and diseases such as asthma greatly improved, providing a substantial part of their phenotype engages IgE. Clinical trials and real life studies confirm this. Beyond asthma, a whole range of other diseases dependent upon IgE initiation and triggering are being identified. These diseases are now being explored as being amenable to anti-IgE therapy some of which are comorbidities of asthma and others not. The advent of an even more potent anti-IgE mAb - QGE031 - is creating further opportunities for anti-IgE therapy to improve the lives of so many people with IgE-related diseases.
"Omalizumab has been shown to reduce asthma exacerbations and hospital visits, as well as corticosteroid use, in patients with allergic asthma91011. Omalizumab has also been shown to have a direct OCS-sparing effect in a 32- week randomized, open-label study in adolescents and adults (12–75 years) with severe asthma  , as well as in a 16-week uncontrolled therapeutic trial in children (median age 12 years) . eXpeRience was an international registry initiated to evaluate outcomes in patients receiving omalizumab for uncontrolled persistent allergic asthma in 'real-world' clinical practice. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Oral corticosteroids (OCS) are commonly administered in patients with severe persistent allergic asthma. Despite their efficacy, they are associated with a wide variety of adverse events. The eXpeRience registry was set up to investigate real-world outcomes among patients receiving omalizumab for the treatment of uncontrolled allergic asthma. Here, we present the effect of omalizumab treatment on OCS use.
eXpeRience was a 2-year, multinational, non-interventional, observational registry of patients receiving omalizumab for uncontrolled allergic asthma. OCS use (proportion of patients on maintenance OCS, mean total daily OCS dose and change in status of OCS therapy) was assessed at baseline, 16 weeks, and 8, 12, 18, and 24 months after the initiation of omalizumab. Response to omalizumab was assessed using the physician's Global Evaluation of Treatment Effectiveness (GETE) at approximately Week 16. Safety data were also recorded.
A total of 943 patients (mean age, 45 years; female, 64.9%) were enrolled in the registry, 263 of whom were receiving maintenance OCS at baseline. The proportion of patients taking maintenance OCS was markedly lower at Months 12 (16.1%) and 24 (14.2%) than at baseline (28.6%; intent-to-treat population). GETE status was determined in 915 patients receiving omalizumab: 64.2% were responders (excellent or good response), 30.7% were non-responders (moderate, poor or worsening response); 5.1% had no assessment. The frequency of serious adverse events was comparable to that seen in controlled trials of omalizumab.
Omalizumab use is associated with an OCS-sparing effect in patients with uncontrolled persistent allergic asthma in the real-world setting.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Allergy Asthma and Clinical Immunology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Problematic severe asthma is the term used to describe children whose asthma is not responsive to standard therapy with high-dose inhaled corticosteroids and additional controllers. These children need to be assessed by a step-wise systematic protocol in order to confirm the diagnosis, evaluate co-morbidities, assess the adherence to treatment, and finally evaluate the basic management. More than half of these children have "difficult-to-treat asthma", which improves if the basic management is correct. Children whose asthma remains uncontrolled despite resolution of any reversible factors are termed "severe therapy-resistant" asthmatics; for them, an individualised treatment plan is developed after a detailed and invasive protocol of investigation. Therapeutic options for these patients can be divided into medications used in lower doses for children with less severe asthma, and those used in other pediatric diseases but not for asthma. Most treatments are unlicensed and there is a lack of high-quality evidence. Children with recurrent severe exacerbations, in particular in the context of good baseline asthma control, are particularly difficult to treat, and there is no evidence on which therapeutic option to recommend. International collaborations, using standard protocols of investigation, are needed to better understand mechanisms of severe therapy-resistant asthma and to deliver evidence-based treatments in the future.
Preview · Article · Jun 2012 · Monaldi archives for chest disease = Archivio Monaldi per le malattie del torace / Fondazione clinica del lavoro, IRCCS [and] Istituto di clinica tisiologica e malattie apparato respiratorio, Università di Napoli, Secondo ateneo